semper me invenio

it's an ongoing adventure.

My Not-Resolutions

 

One of my coworkers’ resolutions is to take more baths, and I think that’s lovely. I don’t like baths myself, but the sentiment is nice: do things that make you happy/bring you peace/whatever instead of trying to somehow improve yourself because you find yourself lacking in some way. If you’re going to make resolutions, they ought to be doable, and how easily kept is a resolution when it reminds you of what you don’t like about yourself?

It’s also that you can start Day 1 on any day of the year. If something truly bothers you, if it’s truly important, don’t wait. Dive right in.

Of course, this could also all be because I’m not one for New Year’s resolutions. That can’t come as a surprise: while I’m all about BIG SHINY NEW IDEAS, following through is…really not my thing. If I were to make resolutions, “to follow through more quickly” would be one of them. It would be a great one (or a horrible one) because it applies to so much. For example, laundry. I eventually manage to do laundry (I don’t mind doing laundry once I’ve started, but it’s lugging the hamper downstairs that’s the challenge), but then I don’t put my laundry away until it’s almost time to do laundry again. And each and every time, I swear that it’ll be different, I will fold my laundry straight away instead of pulling clean clothing from the hamper and tossing dirty clothes on the floor. And each and every time, it’s no different.

Here’s another Not Resolution: do a little bit of room-organizing every week (most likely on the weekend). A cluttered room only bothers me because it can occasionally make it difficult for me to think; I end up feeling so restless when I’m surrounded by mess for too long, and I’ve been surrounded by mess for too long. And room-organizing could be putting laundry away (so win-win). It’s not a complete room-cleaning every weekend, just a little bit to make sure there aren’t any glasses or mugs growing mold on my desk, that the stacks of books are neat, that sort of thing. And if I take down all the glasses and mugs, I won’t have to stack books if I don’t want to. That’s what “a little bit” means.

Then there are general goals, things that I’ve been meaning to do forever but never have, like: clean out the boxes under my bed and the junk drawers. (And as these are things in my room, they count as room-organizing!) Apply to jobs in more desirable locales. Travel more (so I can make a longer list of those more desirable locales). Work to get myself the hell out of here because I don’t feel like myself in PA.

Journal at least twice a week. Read more regularly. Blog more regularly (maybe). Spend less time online; I don’t even enjoy the internet at all that much. Drink lots of tea. Write every single day.

Write every single day is the main one. It’s the big one. I don’t have word count goals because I don’t want to make myself hate writing, but I need to write every day. Reading and writing are the two activities that make me feel the most like myself, and when too much time goes by and I haven’t…well, like I said, it’s a lovely sentiment to do things that make you happy or bring you peace.

Who sucks at blogging? ME!

In the category of Things That Actually Qualify As News, I saw Star Wars (actually, that probably doesn’t qualify as news: is anyone surprised? Of course I saw it. I was the one who turned to stare horrified at a coworker who confessed she’d never seen any of the movies and threatened to fetch my iPad because I have the original trilogy on there and how do you go through life completely okay not seeing Star Wars?) and oh my gosh but I have no words. Other than “Again!” and “WHAT DO YOU MEAN, 26 MAY 2017?” Dan texted me yesterday to ask if I had seen it, and I replied no, and he said that he was disappointed in me. My mother asked me why I was up and dressed so early on a Saturday and seemed genuinely surprised when I replied, “Star Wars.” She doesn’t understand; she’s incapable of it; she still confuses Star Wars with Star Trek, which is something that can’t understand. The two franchises are completely different. (Well, less so with J J Abrams behind the Star Trek reboot films and the Star Wars sequel trilogy, but still.)

Sometimes I think that my love for science fiction and fantasy and just generally being a bit of a pop culture geek disappoints my mother. I wasn’t raised to be a fan; Star Wars things went to my brothers, not to me. Admittedly, neither of my parents are Star Wars fans; I’m sure my father would have gone to see Star Wars with me (and when if I go again, I’ll invite him) at a more reasonable time or if he had known that I was going, but it’s not a must-see film for him. (How is that even possible? How is it not a must-see film for everyone?)

In a way, I suppose I should be a little bit grateful for my slightly gendered upbringing: had I thought video games were at all a thing girls could be interested in, I think I would be quite a gamer and therefore quite broke and quite stressed because video games to play but books to read and movies and TV shows to watch but must work for money and how do you even. But then, it becomes frustrating when I feel like my parents think I’m a bit ridiculous with my feminism and leftist views. At least there’s Dan for those sorts of conversations. He thinks I’m a bit ridiculous too but at least his position doesn’t mimic Bobby Newport’s on abortion, and you just can’t argue with someone who thinks we should just all have a good time. No duh, so how the hell do we get there exactly?

I was out in Los Angeles the week after Thanksgiving (also the Bay Area and Phoenix) to visit Dan and Tricia, and I bought way too many books. I also met Holly in real life and Faye in real life and saw Erin again in real life, and I think we should have a LRRH reunion now that we are adults and can actually make it happen. It’s lovely to talk to people who are willing to have intelligent conversations, which is perhaps the thing that I miss most about LRRH. (Well, and the inside jokes that Jess and I created. I miss how utterly silly we could be.) Much of my world exists on a different plane than do I; the few people who I feel are on the same live miles away. (Usually, I’m okay with this, but it was crushing to realize that I’d have to see Star Wars alone.)

Now excuse me while I go reminisce over how wonderful it felt for the pure silence as the screen read “A long time ago in a galaxy far far away…” in that same horrible blue font before EPIC THEME MUSIC AND SCROLLING INTRO.

I’ll be introspective and observant later.

Feeling so very twenty-first century writing this in my iPad, which is hooked up to the Internet using my phone as a hotspot. Why I didn’t just connect my iPad to the library’s wireless…well, that’s just less fun and cool-sounding, isn’t it?

I feel like I haven’t been doing much of anything besides going to work, tutoring, and watching football. Occasionally I read, but not as much as I would like (especially considering the way I buy books), and I haven’t been writing at all. I haven’t even been journaling. I am so inspired to write, to do something to get out because work is soul-sucking (even when you don’t hate your job), but by the times get home and eat and unwind, the last thing I want to do is write one thousand words or try to make a story make sense.

I could really do with a keyboard for this thing; typing on the screen kinda sucks. Not because of he size but because it’s so hard against my fingertips. Granted I am not the softest, most gentle Tyler, but still. Maybe I shall have to look for a keyboard before I go out to LA.

I have a lot of thoughts about working and being an adult (I have my own health insurance now!), but that would require me to like typing on this thing more than I do. I’m only doing this now because it’s the last day of the month, and I won’t be home until late and then it’s Survivor.

Boxes.

Once the files are boxed, the boxes must be labelled. Once they’re labelled, they must go downstairs to storage.

The boxes that I box sit there and sit there because I cannot bring myself to ask a man to carry the boxes down.

So I let them sit there.

It’s silly, I know, but I wish desperately that there was a woman whom I knew could carry down the box and put it on the shelf in the storage room. I’d ask her easy-peasy.

But I cannot ask a man.

I know that physiologically, men tend to be stronger than women, and I thought I was okay with that. Differences are okay. Differences are good. And besides, I boxed the files; certainly a male coworker can carry the box down. Isn’t that fair?

And yet I cannot bring myself to play into the gender narrative. I cannot bring myself to ask a man for help, to cast myself in the role of weak woman. But no one would see it that way; they’d all understand.

Because if I do the filing, put myself into a stereotypical woman’s role, and rationalize it by saying, “But he’s going to carry down the boxes…” then couldn’t I find myself attempting to excuse more despicable acts of sexism?

I cannot bring myself to accept that my sex can limit me, especially when I sit there as my fellow female coworkers complain about sexism in the workplace while the men are out on a company golf outing.

I’d rather let the boxes sit there or hurt myself trying to carry them down myself.

Even though I shouldn’t have anything to prove, I feel like I do.

Chin

(He’s named for the black spot on his chin.)

My mother’s been volunteering at the ARL, and for the past two weeks, this little guy has been staring her down, and she finally gave in and brought him home.

He’s super sweet. Loves to be petted and near people. We’re basically all in love with this newest addition to the family.

Strange, though, how once we had three dogs and no cats, and now we have three cats and only one dog.

A conundrum

Maybe you were all faster than me
We gave each other up so easily
These silly little wounds will never mend
I feel so far from where I’ve been

So I go, and I will not be back here again
I’m gone as the day is fading on white houses
I lie, put my injuries all in the dust
In my heart is the five of us in white houses

– “White Houses”, Vanessa Carlton

I used to miss the way things were so much. Sometimes I still do. When you learn about happenings in the lives of people who you used to be good friends with, it’s hard not to miss that closeness. It’s hard not to feel sad about how easily good things – things that were everything – fade into nothing.

All around me are people who have moved on or are moving on.

“I lead a boring existence,” I said. “Oh don’t say that,” was the response.

But I do. And that’s okay because to be honest? Most people lead boring existences.

It’s that my existence feels so meaningless. That’s what eats at me.

It kills me to say this but it’s relationships with people outside your family that make life meaningful.

I have no such relationships. Not really. The perpetual third wheel, that’s me. (And the triangle is the sturdiest shape. Ha.)

I have nothing to keep me in the here and now. What I have in abundance is imagination and a wistfulness for all the things that could be or could have been. And if I were doing something, something that I could consider meaningful (like writing for an actual audience), maybe it would be different. But I don’t.

All I really have is myself, and as much as I’d like to be the kind of person whose self is enough, I’m not. Not all the time. Not enough of the time.

I should clean my room, but it’s such a daunting task. Just about everything but continuing on, unchanging, in this depressing meaningless existence that I am forced to call my life is. And yet that is killing my soul. So what is a person to do?

 

 

And this is June’s post

Every time I try to write a blog post, I get hit by a wave of melancholy, and I’m trying to be positive. Or, at the very least, I’m trying to view the now as just a stepping stone and no, I’m definitely not where I want to be and no, this is definitely not how I thought my life would go (is it ever?), but it’s all part of the process.

I’m not very good at that. I’m much better at vividly daydreaming better, more interesting lives for myself because my own life is so vastly dull.

See? Melancholy.

It’s just that there’s something very depressing about having a 9-5 job. I always wanted to give a “fuck you” to society, and instead, I’m conforming.

Even though it’s not. You do what you have to do to get by, and there’s no shame in that.

Except that deep down I want to be the person who says screw comfort and screw having things and runs off to New York City to live in a moldy closet of an apartment and work shitty jobs and eat ramen while working furiously on my novel in every spare bit of time.

I’m going to live in New York City someday.

In happier news, it occurred to me to make my signature at work rainbow-colored, but I thought it best not to be so obvious.